presents to you; Domestic violence: 7 ways to prevent it

More than one-third of women and one in 12 men have experienced intimate partner violence in their lifetime.

According to the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey. Anyone would agree that’s too many. If you’re asking yourself what you can do to help, read on.

Below, 10 steps you can take to help stop domestic violence around you.

Know the signs.

adult alone black and white blur

Domestic violence can happen to anyone; white, black, young, old, rich, poor, educated, and even uneducated. Sometimes violence begins early on in a relationship and other times it takes months or even years to appear. But there generally are some warning signs.

Be aware of the following red flags an abuser may exhibit at any point in a relationship:

  • Being jealous of your friends or time spent away from your partner
  • Discouraging you from spending time away from your partner
  • Embarrassing or shaming you
  • Controlling all financial decisions
  • Making you feel guilty for all the problems in the relationship
  • Preventing you from working
  • Intentionally damaging your property
  • Threatening violence against you, your pets or someone you love to gain compliance
  • Pressuring you to have sex when you don’t want to
  • Intimidating you physically, especially with weapons

Don’t ignore it.

anxious woman having phone conversation in office

Police officers hear the same thing from witnesses again and again—I heard/saw/perceived domestic violence but didn’t want to get involved. If you hear your neighbours engaged in a violent situation, call the police. It could save a life.

Be available.

two woman chatting

If someone you know is thinking about leaving or is in fear the violence will escalate, be ready to help. Keep your phone with you and the ringer on, make sure you have gas in your car and discuss an escape plan or meeting place ahead of time.

Give a listening ear.

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If someone ever confides in you they are experiencing domestic violence, listen without judgment. Believe what they are telling you and ask how you can help, or see this list of 25 ways to help a survivor.

Check-in regularly.

woman in black shirt leaning on brown wooden table

 If a loved one or friend is in danger, reach out regularly to ensure his or her safety.

Be a resource.

photo of woman teaching

Someone experiencing violence may not be able to research shelters, escape plans or set up necessities like bank accounts and cell phones while living with his or her abuser. Offer to do the legwork to help ease stress and keep things confidential.

Write it down.

woman in brown coat holding book

Document every incident you witness and include the date, time, location, injuries and circumstances. This information could be very useful in later police reports and court cases, both criminal and civil.

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